Modi in Nepal
Indian Prime Minister, Narendra Modi being received by his Nepal counterpart Sushil Koirala on his arrival at Tribhuvan International Airport, Kathmandu, in Nepal on 3rd August, 2014.PIB

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrived in Kathmandu to a colourful welcome of a ceremonial guard of honour on Sunday, where his Nepal counterpart Sushil Koirala personally received him.

Koirala was also accompanied by the country's deputy prime ministers Bam Dev Gautam and Prakash Man Singh to welcome Modi at the airport.

The Nepal Army gave Modi a 19-gun salute at the airport, where tight security was in place.

The aim of Modi's visit to Nepal is to start a "new chapter" in the equation between the two countries. In 17 years, Modi is the first Indian Prime Minister to pay a visit to Nepal.

"I am excited about my visit and pleased that I am able to go there within weeks of assuming office as Prime Minister," The Hindu quoted the PM.

Modi is visiting Nepal from 3 to 4 August at the invitation of the government of Nepal. 

The PM recalled that Koirala had graced his swearing-in ceremony as prime minister, which demonstrated the solidarity of the people of Nepal with India and shared commitment to democracy.

The India-Nepal Joint Commission Meeting, chaired by the nations' respective Foreign Ministers, also met recently after a long gap of 23 years and reviewed the entire gamut of bilateral relations and cooperation with a focus on economic relations, trade and connectivity.

The two countries will identify steps to strengthen their bilateral cooperation in key sectors, including trade and investment, hydro power, agriculture and agro-processing, environment, tourism, education, culture and sports, Modi pointed out.

The PM will also discuss with Nepali leadership and their business leaders how India can harness the full potential of the new digital age to empower and create new opportunities for the youth of the two countries.

Nepal has made admirable progress in its peace process and political transition towards a multiparty democracy. The successful conduct of the Constituent Assembly-cum-Parliamentary elections in November 2013 is yet another tribute to the sagacity of the Nepalese leadership and the people of Nepal, Modi said.

"I am truly grateful to the people and the elected representatives of Nepal for giving me the rare honour of addressing the Parliament of Nepal," the Indian PM stated.

As a close friend and neighbour, India has the privilege of being a leading partner in Nepal's socio-economic development, Modi stressed. India and Nepal are committed to continuing their support to Nepal in its development efforts.

Both countries' ongoing projects for development of border infrastructure will usher in economic prosperity to the people living on both sides of the border and also enhance connectivity. During Modi's visit, Nepal and India will explore the ways to further strengthen their development cooperation.

Modi will also discuss Nepalese leadership, the steps to further strengthen people-to-people contacts between the two countries, and how to connect lives across our open borders more seamlessly, particularly among the youth.